People Like Me

No-one (normal) wakes up and thinks, "Hey! I MUST get me an ISA today!!" Things crop up. Life changes. Stuff happens which makes us bite the bullet and think about money.

There are some very common things which prompt people to sit up and say "Right. I need help!"  Read on to see what prompts people to look for money advice. Ring any bells?

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Adam - "Guilty Dad"

Adam is 42 and has 2 kids. He doesn’t understand the stock market and has always avoided shares. However, he’s starting to think about schools for the children and is wondering if going private is an option. He’s feeling a bit guilty about not getting his head around this stuff sooner but wants to explore his options and to see if he can make his cash work harder.  He’s not comfortable going it entirely alone.

  • He can set aside about £400 a month
  • He has a lump sum of about £15,000 in a cash account
  • He doesn’t know much about investing
  • Even if the schools thing doesn’t work out, he’s still interested in building a longer-term savings pot.

We think Adam should explore Digital Advice for a gentle introduction to the world of investing 
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Ella - "I just want to start"

Ella is 27 and rents a flat in London. She knows that she wants to open an ISA as her first investment vehicle but doesn’t know where to even begin! She is keen to start, but brain frazzled. She is nervous about losing money but has a long-term timeframe – this is “just being sensible” money.

We think she should first make sure she builds those cash savings into 3-6 months’ income as a buffer. And then drip feed into an ISA.

  • She has £2,000 as a lump sum and thinks she could invest £150 each month
  • She wants someone to do the heavy-lifting for her
  • Before any ISA, we'd suggest she focusses on that cash buffer first 

When ready, we think Ella should explore our Pick A Product tables and look at the ‘Ready-Made’ options.

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Susan - "Getting divorced :0( "

Susan is 58 and is getting a divorce. She didn’t see it coming and is trying to deal with the emotional and financial upheaval. She is beating herself up for not learning more about money sooner and feels panicky about what the future holds. Her own pension is minimal as she was the main child carer when the children were growing up. There are thousands of decisions to be made and she feels like she is drowning.

  • The family home is worth about £800,000
  • She doesn’t have much of a pension
  • She is unsure about what investments are held in joint accounts
  • She has two children, one at uni and one in work

We believe that Susan should seek Full Fat Advice. She may prefer to look for a female financial adviser. 

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Jonny - "Feel a bit stupid!"

Jonny is 46 and quite frankly feels a bit embarrassed at how little he knows. He has a couple of different questions about how much to save / where to invest and he wouldn’t mind swatting up on “the basics” out there. He’s a bit spooked about retirement and wants to work out ‘his number’. Is he going to have to work ‘till he’s 103!?

What will the State Pension be? How old will he be when it kicks in? What will his work pension be worth? Should he be investing in something other than cash? Our information pages will let him fill in some starting numbers on the back of the proverbial fag packet.  It wont give him a full roadmap but it’s a good starting point.

  • Current income £45,000 a year
  • Is auto-enrolled in his work pension
  • Has £20,000 in cash savings
  • He has no investments

We think Jonny should start with our Information pages as a starting point.

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George - "I want to stop working!"

George is 58 and would ideally love to retire within the next four years. He has multiple pension pots and various investments here and there but isn’t sure if he will have enough income for him and his wife to live off if he retires so soon.  He is trying to work out how much he needs to retire and can’t get a clear answer from any website.

  • Current income of £70,000 per annum with a workplace pension
  • Has worked all his life so has a full National Insurance record
  • Multiple pension pots in multiple places
  • No final salary scheme pension
  • About £50,000 in various cash accounts and ISAs

We think George should check out the Digital Advice options first up – choosing a pensions specialist.